Injuries are a part of life, but they can be devastating. That’s why it’s important to know your rights and what legal options you have if you’ve been injured due to another person’s negligence or carelessness.
While there are no clear-cut answers as to when you should file suit against an individual or company who caused your injuries, there are some common guidelines that can help determine whether or not taking legal action would be worth it for you.
What Are Personal Injuries?
Personal injury generally refers to any injury caused to a person as a result of actions or negligence of another person. The term “personal injuries” is broad and can include many different types of claims:
- Bodily Injury Claims (i.e., physical injuries)
- Emotional Distress Claims (i.e., mental anguish)
- Property Damage Claims (i.e., damage to property)
In most cases, if you are injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you can receive compensation for your losses. You may also be able to recover damages for your pain and suffering if the accident permanently affects your ability to perform daily tasks and activities, as well as for medical bills related directly to the accident itself.
Common Types of Personal Injuries
Personal injury cases are similar to other types of civil lawsuits, but they have several unique characteristics that are important to understand. Some of the common types of personal injuries are medical malpractice, road traffic injuries, slip and fall accidents, and product liability cases.
In addition to the above, a large number of work-related injuries also go to court. As per Stats.gov, 223,300 work-related claims were made in 2021, of which 39,000 were more serious claims.
In these scenarios, one person has caused harm or damage to another person by doing something (or failing to do something). For you to be compensated for your injuries in a court case like this one, it must be proven through evidence that there was indeed negligence on behalf of the responsible party.
If your injuries are severe enough and require medical care due to another person’s negligence, then you may qualify for compensation. It is important for you to not only receive appropriate treatment but also get paid for all costs related to treatment received if someone else’s negligence caused them.
Some States have enacted laws requiring insurance companies to provide coverage regardless of whether someone else’s negligence was at fault or not. However, these types of laws vary from state to state. So check with local laws before filing any claims with them.
Personal Injury Claim by a Family Member
If you’re a family member of the victim, you can file a lawsuit for wrongful death. It’s possible to claim for loss of companionship, loss of income, and other damages following the death of a loved one.
For example, if your loved one was killed due to medical error, which is a leading cause of death in the U.S. and claims more than 100,000 lives each year, you may be able to file a lawsuit against doctors or hospitals that were involved in treatment leading up to their death.
The Role of a Personal Injury Lawyer
Personal injury attorneys can help you with all the paperwork involved in filing a lawsuit, including the initial filing and discovery requests. A lawyer can also help you find out whether or not your case is valid before actually filing it, which saves time and money for both parties.
For example, let’s say that you are injured in a car accident, but the other driver denies any responsibility for causing your injuries. A personal injury attorney will look at the evidence presented during this investigation phase, such as police reports and witness testimonies. He or she will then determine whether or not there is enough evidence to suggest that the other driver was at fault.
Laws Regarding Personal Injury Claims
Laws regarding personal injury claims are different in every state. The laws of your state will determine the validity of your claim and whether or not you can file a lawsuit for damages. Your lawyer is familiar with these laws and will be able to help you file a claim within the specified period.
For example, a victim in St. Louis, Missouri, can claim personal injury compensation for emotional distress alone, which is not allowed in most other states. Also, the timeline to file a personal injury claim in St. Louis is five years, which is higher than two years in most states in the U.S. A St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer will guide you about the personal injury claims you can make under Missouri law.
Deadline to File Personal Injury Claim
The deadlines that apply to personal injury cases vary from state to state. You should consult a lawyer before filing a claim so that they can help you understand the different timelines and processes in your area.
In general, however, most states require that lawsuits be filed within two years of an injury taking place or immediately after it becomes known to the injured party. Some allow six months instead of two years. If you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence or misconduct and wish to file suit against them, you should ensure that this deadline has not passed before doing so.
Personal injuries can range from mild to severe. The moderate ones include broken bones, cuts, and bruises. More serious injuries include those that result in permanent disability or even death.
A staggering number of personal injury claims are filed each year in the U. S., but only about 3 to 4 percent of them go on trial. Most of these cases are settled outside of court, but only after a lawsuit is filed.
It is important to remember that legal action should always be an option for the victim of personal injury, whether it is a minor or major injury.